• 1 hour India Exempts State Oil Firms Mergers From Competition Approval
  • 3 hours Turkey Targets $5B Investment In Wind Energy By End-2017
  • 5 hours Weatherford Looks To Sell Assets To Ease Some Of $8B Debt
  • 6 hours OPEC Set To Move Fast On Cut Extension Decision
  • 8 hours Nigeria Makes First Step Away From Oil
  • 20 hours Russia Approves Profit-Based Oil Tax For 2019
  • 1 day French Strike Disrupts Exxon And Total’s Oil Product Shipments
  • 1 day Kurdistan’s Oil Exports Still Below Pre-Conflict Levels
  • 1 day Oil Production Cuts Taking A Toll On Russia’s Economy
  • 1 day Aramco In Talks With Chinese Petrochemical Producers
  • 1 day Federal Judge Grants Go-Ahead On Keystone XL Lawsuit
  • 1 day Maduro Names Chavez’ Cousin As Citgo Boss
  • 2 days Bidding Action Heats Up In UK’s Continental Shelf
  • 2 days Keystone Pipeline Restart Still Unknown
  • 2 days UK Offers North Sea Oil Producers Tax Relief To Boost Investment
  • 2 days Iraq Wants To Build Gas Pipeline To Kuwait In Blow To Shell
  • 2 days Trader Trafigura Raises Share Of Oil Purchases From State Firms
  • 2 days German Energy Group Uniper Rejects $9B Finnish Takeover Bid
  • 2 days Total Could Lose Big If It Pulls Out Of South Pars Deal
  • 2 days Dakota Watchdog Warns It Could Revoke Keystone XL Approval
  • 3 days Oil Prices Rise After API Reports Major Crude Draw
  • 3 days Citgo President And 5 VPs Arrested On Embezzlement Charges
  • 3 days Gazprom Speaks Out Against OPEC Production Cut Extension
  • 3 days Statoil Looks To Lighter Oil To Boost Profitability
  • 3 days Oil Billionaire Becomes Wind Energy’s Top Influencer
  • 3 days Transneft Warns Urals Oil Quality Reaching Critical Levels
  • 3 days Whitefish Energy Suspends Work In Puerto Rico
  • 3 days U.S. Authorities Arrest Two On Major Energy Corruption Scheme
  • 4 days Thanksgiving Gas Prices At 3-Year High
  • 4 days Iraq’s Giant Majnoon Oilfield Attracts Attention Of Supermajors
  • 4 days South Iraq Oil Exports Close To Record High To Offset Kirkuk Drop
  • 4 days Iraqi Forces Find Mass Graves In Oil Wells Near Kirkuk
  • 4 days Chevron Joint Venture Signs $1.7B Oil, Gas Deal In Nigeria
  • 4 days Iraq Steps In To Offset Falling Venezuela Oil Production
  • 4 days ConocoPhillips Sets Price Ceiling For New Projects
  • 7 days Shell Oil Trading Head Steps Down After 29 Years
  • 7 days Higher Oil Prices Reduce North American Oil Bankruptcies
  • 7 days Statoil To Boost Exploration Drilling Offshore Norway In 2018
  • 7 days $1.6 Billion Canadian-US Hydropower Project Approved
  • 7 days Venezuela Officially In Default
Alt Text

Who's Next? Venezuela's Collapse Puts These Nations At Risk

While investors have been ignoring…

Alt Text

Is China Heading Toward An Energy-Debt Crisis?

China’s influence is often overlooked…

Michael McDonald

Michael McDonald

Michael is an assistant professor of finance and a frequent consultant to companies regarding capital structure decisions and investments. He holds a PhD in finance…

More Info

Will 2016 Be The Year Of Wireless Energy?

Will 2016 Be The Year Of Wireless Energy?

Wireless power has been a dream of mankind’s for decades, but the technology finally appears to be gaining some traction. Theoretically, numerous studies have shown that wireless power is possible through a variety of aerial transmission modalities. Yet the problem with wireless power has been getting the technology to work at a reasonable range.

So far, commercial use of wireless power has been limited, but progress is being made. For instance, Samsung now has a commercially available wireless charger for its cell phones. With the charger, consumers do not need to plug their phone into the wall for it to charge. Related: OPEC’s Bad Bet By The Numbers

Unfortunately though, the consumer still has to place their phone onto the wireless charging pad meaning that there is a still a physical connection required to power the phone. Even wireless devices like Qi and PowerMat only work to wirelessly power from about an inch away; hardly the kind of freedom that would empower consumers to use devices in new ways. Given that limitation, the wireless charging for the phone is a gimmick or cool tech toy depending on your perspective, rather than a true game changer for mobile devices.

In 2007, MIT researchers demonstrated a way to wirelessly power a light bulb using power conducted via a magnetic field from a source a few feet away. The bulb did not have to be connected to the wall or physically touching a power source in order to get power. While this represents a more useful system than the one Samsung is currently fielding, the key again is the limited distance over which the power can be transmitted. Efforts are being made to commercialize the approach, but so far, there are no widely available applications for true wireless power. Related: Korea Leading The Way With Ambitious Fuel Cell Project

Two new approaches to wireless power may be about to change that, however. First, a company called uBeam is working on using a form of ultrasonic emissions to power phones from a longer distance. The company has attracted big name VC support from a number of notable backers like Andreessen Horowitz, Marissa Mayer, and Mark Cuban. Critics remain deeply skeptical of the technology, and it has yet to be proven, but if uBeam can do what it says, it could be a very big deal indeed.

Even more promising than uBeam is the technology from a company named Ossia. Ossia has developed a form of antenna like device called Cota that will be able to theoretically power any electrical device a consumer has from a phone to an electric toothbrush. Ossia’s Cota is set to launch for the commercial market in 2016 along with a series of manufacturers that are announcing compatible devices that will work with Cota. Related: OPEC’s Strategy Is Working According To Cartel’s Latest Report

It remains to be seen exactly what the specifications and consumer reception for Ossia and uBeam’s technology will be. Nonetheless, the need for wireless power is real across a variety of applications. From simple consumer cell phones to electric vehicles, wireless power would fill a real need. If power could be transmitted long distances wirelessly, it would completely change “range anxiety” which has held back the EV market.

Moreover, there are obvious applications in healthcare and defense as well. For instance, new technologies in defense like railguns and directed energy weapons are slowly starting to become a reality. However, the power needs for many of these devices are massive. If electricity could be transmitted wirelessly, then these types of defense technologies could be much more realistic. It’s unclear if long distance wireless power is even possible under the laws of physics, but for now mankind is just starting to push the envelope and companies like Ossia and uBeam are leading the way.

By Michael McDonald of Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:




Back to homepage


Leave a comment

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News